A Gas Tax Hike Might Not Clobber The Poor...

Higher federal excise taxes on gasoline would seem to promise multiple benefits for the U. S. economy--reducing the budget deficit, encouraging conservation, and limiting both pollution and U. S. dependence on foreign oil. The problem for many opponents, however, is that such taxes are highly regressive in that they impose the heaviest burden on low-income households. Indeed, that's one reason Congress limited the gasoline tax hike it passed last fall to just 5~ per gallon, a paltry increase that left the average U. S. tax bite still less than one-fifth of that paid by motorists in Germany, Japan, France, and Britain.

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